2 Judges Objected to Procedure: SC Collegium in Statement Amid Reports of Rifts

This is in light of the Union Law Minister's letter to the CJI on 7 October, asking him to recommend his successor.

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Amid unverified reports of a rift over the Supreme Court collegium meeting on 30 September, the members of the 5-judge body led by CJI UU Lalit released a statement on Monday, 10 October, saying that two members of the collegium - Justices DY Chandrachud and Abdul Nazeer- objected to CJI Lalit's letter seeking written views regarding proposals for elevation of judges to the Supreme Court.

The two judges reportedly did not express an opinion against the candidates but the method of seeking approval through circulation of letters.

The statement further said that the 30 September meeting has been discharged in light of the Union Law Minister's letter to the CJI on 7 October, asking him to recommend his successor.

"In the circumstances, no further steps need be taken and the unfinished work in the meeting called for September 30, 2022 is closed without there being any further deliberation. The meeting dated September 30, 2022 stands discharged," the statement said.


What Happened on 30 September?

The physical meeting which was scheduled on 30 September to deliberate on the candidates at 4.30 PM did not take place as Justice Chandrachud could not attend due to his engagements at the Court.

When the meeting could not take place, CJI Lalit wrote to the members of the collegium on September 30 seeking their views regarding the proposals.

Two members of collegium, Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and K.M. Joseph expressed their approval of the proposals through their respective letters dated 1 October and 7 October.

However, separate letters dated 1 October Justices Chandrachud and S. Abdul Nazeer, objected to the method adopted in the CJI's letter dated 30 September.

In the meeting held on 26 September, the collegium had approved the proposal to elevate Chief Justice of Bombay High Court Justice Dipankar Dutta to the Supreme Court. However, the consideration regarding ten other judges was deferred till 30 September.

In view of this, the Collegium decided to discharge the September 30 meeting without further action after the Union Law Minister's letter.

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